It may seem like an almost impossible task…
It may seem impossible to raise financially responsible children, but there are a few simple techniques to help guide your children to become responsible money makers, savers and spenders. Think back to when you were a child, did your parents ever talk to you about how to spend money or how much things cost? Imagine your parents emphasized the importance of money to you when you were younger. Would your circumstances be different today? Or maybe they did, and you’ve followed their lead and are able to more efficiently guide your own children down financially successful paths. It is so important to create these habits early on because of how moldable and susceptible children are at these young ages.
Habit #1: Handle Money Tangibly
The first technique is to give them real money to tangibly handle. Take them to the grocery store, have your list and a budget, and walk the aisles with them allowing them to understand what you can and cannot afford. At the end of the trip, have them deal with the transaction- counting and handing the money to the cashier. This will not only allow them to gain confidence when handling money, but you’ll see their faces light up because you have offered them an opportunity to complete a task and be proud of themselves.
Habit #2: Teaching Your Children how to Give
The second technique is teaching children how to give. You’d be surprised at how many kids really do love and want to give; they just need some sort of direction. Have them pick a cause or charity close to their heart. Animals, or children in need are great ones- something they can relate to. Encourage them to give portions of their chore or birthday money to these causes, showing them that they can make a difference in this world with their finances. On top of giving money, teach them that giving doesn’t always mean spending money. Show them that giving can be in the form of donating your time. Sign up to volunteer at animal shelters or soup kitchens and have them get active in the community. You may think they don’t or won’t fully understand the concept of giving at such small ages, but they truly do.
Habit #3: Teaching Your Kids to be Grateful for What They Have
The final technique to introduce to your little ones is to cultivate a gratitude practice. Each night before they go to bed, have them say three things they are most grateful for. This practice will teach them that when they focus on what they are grateful for, it leaves little room for complaints or unhappiness. Gratitude slowly changes the way we perceive our circumstances by changing our focus to what we have instead of what we don’t. This won’t just be financially beneficial but will also help them to lead more positive and happy lives. You may find that overtime, you can begin to learn a thing or two from your little ones.